Well, our winter vacation is quickly drawing to a close. Next Sunday, April 1, we depart for Copper Harbor and the start of our 37th year owning and operating the Isle Royale Ferry Service from the Harbor to Isle Royale Narional Park.
I thought I would conclude my winter blog by posting the cover of the latest of three book I have read since arriving here in mid-February. The Closing of the Western Mind: The Rise of Faith and the Fall of Reason, is Charles Freeman's latest book on the founding and development of Christianity from Jesus to Thomas Aquinas with a fair amount of Greek philosopy (namely Plato and Aristotle) added. With a great deal of selectivity and not a little looseness, he adequately supports his premise as indicated in the sub-title of his book. Personally, I am wary of any writer on Christianity who glosses over the cataclysmic destruction of the Temple Mount in 70 ce and its impetus to Christianity and Freeman does just that. Moreover, in a patently untrue statement, he implies that all of Paul's letters were written before that event. This makes one suspect about the rest of the supporting evidence. Nonetheless, it is a good read and well worthwhile.
The other two books I read were Jerusalem: City of Three Faiths, (for the second time) by Karen Armstrong (another popularization of the history of that vital city), and Surpassing Wonder: The Invention of the Bible and the Talmuds (for the umteenth time), a book that stoked and continues to feed my interest in the history of religion (as opposed to the history of theology), by Donald K. Akenson.
Finally, I listened to the 14 lectures entitled, "Jerusalem: City of God, City of Fire," delivered by Professor F. E. Peters of New York Univerrsity, a series from the Portable Professor, whick is available at Amazon or B&N. It is a very interesting overview of the events that vexed people throughout its history and well into modern times.
In short, my free time between visiting friends, eating out a couple of times a day, walking about 3 miles per day, and shopping was spent doing what I love to do most: read.
As we start our season, I am on a critical path to retire on January 1, 2008 at the age of 77-1/2, just about the age my own father reached before he passed away and I guess that is the goal of most men: to live beyond their fathers. See you later.